Debra Radke
Artist BIO

     A life-long artist, Debra Radke constructs landscape-based, mixed media paintings that straddle the space between abstraction and realism. Debra was born in Grand Rapids, Michigan and received her BFA in Painting with high honors from Michigan State University. She completed her MFA Phi Kappa Phi from the University of South Florida in 1997.
     Debra has received many awards and honors; most prized is a Phi Kappa Phi Fellowship Award for her graduate studies. She has exhibited her work in Bulgaria, Canada, France, Ireland, Spain and the UK, along with the US and Florida. In 2016 Debra’s work was chosen by the Curator of Prints at the Whitney Museum of American Art for an International Print Exhibition in NYC; followed by a museum exhibition at the Attleboro Museum of Arts in Massachusetts, juried by Curator of the Chazen Museum at University of Wisconsin. Her artwork is featured in catalogues and press articles and is placed in permanent collections both in the US and abroad.
     Debra was awarded an Artist Residency in the mountain village of Lesidren, Bulgaria working alongside 6 artists from 5 countries. Side trips were made to Plovdiv, the oldest city and numerous monasteries around the country, including a stay in the capital city of Sofia, a multi-cultural crossroads filled with ancient history. This experience of living and working in a young democracy on the other side of the world has influenced her work in unexpected ways. Debra continues to work in her studio in west Tampa seeking visual questions related to her Bulgarian experience and melding that experience with her body of existing work. She is entering her 14th year as the Curator of Exhibitions for TECO Public Art Gallery, is an active member of Creatives Exchange, a collective of professional creative women and volunteers in support of fundraising for student scholarships in the Arts.
 DJR 8/2017


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